Chris Christie: If THIS Happens, Mueller Will Put Trump in Jail
In an interview with ABC’s “The Week” program on Sunday, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said that President Donald Trump could run into serious trouble if he goes into an interview with Special Counsel Robert Mueller and relies on his usual rhetorical flourishes. Christie, who has been a friend of Trump’s for years and was one of the first Republicans to endorse him in the 2016 primaries (after dropping out himself), said that Trump’s usual style of exaggeration and hype could put him in a legally sticky situation.
“As a former U.S. attorney and somebody who would be sitting on the other side of that table, he should never walk into that room with Robert Mueller,” Christie said. “Because in the end, one of the things that makes the president who he is, is that he’s a salesman, and salesmen at times tend to be hyperbolic. Right, and this president certainly has tended to do that.
“That’s OK when you’re on the campaign hustle,” Christie continued, “and that’s OK when you’re working on Congress. It is not OK when you’re sitting talking to federal agents because, you know, 18 USC 1001 is false statements to federal agents, that’s a crime, that can send you to jail.”
Despite this public legal advice, which seems to jibe with advice Trump has been given by his personal attorneys, the president is apparently eager to sit down with Mueller and just get it over with. Whether that’s because he’s confident that he has nothing to hide or confident that Mueller isn’t good enough to trap him in a corner remains to be seen.
This entire Russian collusion investigation is a farce and a witch hunt, but Mueller didn’t just start on the job yesterday. He’s smart, clever, and crafty, and he knows every interrogation technique in the book. If Trump goes into a deposition with the special counsel with the idea that he’s just going to wing it, Mueller is going to have a field day. That’s especially true if he’s got Rick Gates, George Papadopoulos, and Michael Flynn singing like canaries behind the scenes. Trump doesn’t know what Mueller knows, and any one lie could be enough to trap him in a perjury situation. It wouldn’t even have to have any bearing on the subject of the investigation. Just ask Bill Clinton.
We’re fairly sure at this point that Mueller has all but abandoned the idea of catching the president in a collusion situation anyway. He’s after that obstruction of justice charge. We doubt that will be enough for him to seriously bring an indictment against a sitting president (if that’s even possible), but it could be enough to put impeachment on the table in Congress – IF the Democrats take control in January. That’s the scenario Trump needs to avoid at all costs, and we don’t see how giving an interview to Mueller will help him do that.